Devotions on Living the Deeper Christian Life

“Be ye angry and sin not…” – Eph 4:26

A Few Thoughts on Anger

There was a little boy who struggled with a bad temper. After an outburst of anger one day, the boy’s father gave him a bag of nails and told him that every time he lost his temper, he was to hammer a nail in the back fence. The first day the boy had driven thirty-seven nails into the fence. Then it gradually dwindled down day by day. Over time, the boy discovered it was easier to hold his temper than to drive those nails into the fence.

Finally, the day came when the boy didn’t lose his temper at all. He told his father about it and the father suggested that the boy now pull out one nail for each day that he was able to hold his temper. The days passed, and the young boy was finally able to tell his father that all the nails were gone.

The father took his son by the hand and led him to the fence and said, “You have done well, my son, but look at the holes in the fence. The fence will never be the same. When you say things in anger, they leave a scar, just like these nails have.”

I once saw a sign that read, “Anger is one letter short of (D)anger.” We all experience being angry in this life. But to be angry with the right person, for the right reason, at the right time, and in the right way, is not easy. The Bible does teach us in Ephesians 4:26 that anger is permitted, but not to let our anger take us to a place of sin. We can be angry at injustice. We can be angry about a loss. We can be angry at man’s inhumanity to man, false teachings, lies, or other perversions. But the key is to be angry and to sin not!

In our humanness, we can be angry and frustrated with the reaping of a choice made many years ago. Shall we let this get the best of us? Our choice is to let it fester inside and blister the heart, or to lay it at the foot of the cross and allow his redemptive power to heal these wounds.

We have the choice to pound nails into the fence of our perceived injustices or to take our anger and frustration to the Lord, who measured the very oceans in the hallow of His hand. (Isaiah 40:12) reads, “Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?” Your anger is better served by resigning it to Him than pounding nails into a fence that will only cause scars into you and others.

Words to Think About…


“Noah preached that judgment was coming for 100 years, yet only 8 people were saved. Lot preached to the thousands in Sodom and Gomorrah, yet only three were saved. Six hundred thousand men, (not counting women and children), passed through the Red Sea, but only 2 entered into the promise land. Gideon went to fight with 32,000 men, but only 300 men were allowed to be a part of the victory. “For many are called, but few are chosen.” – Matthew 22:14

“A word spoken cannot be overtaken by the swiftest horse.” –  Old Chinese Proverb

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: To choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s way.”  – Viktor Frankl, Nazi Concentration Camp Survivor